Not that this will have much interest to anybody but me, but here is an update anyway 😄
When I bought the bike, it had a new Michelin PR4 on the rear and rather worn PR3 up front. Soon after, I replaced the brake discs and took the opportunity to fit a Pilot street, the mentioned narrower 110/70R17. When the new discs also warped, I fitted the spare wheel with stock, straight discs and a 65% worn Bridgestone BT30F mounted.
With all these three front tires together with the PR4 rear, the bike demanded more lean than expected. With the PR3 and PS the bike steered fairly neutral and worked fine also on gravel. The BT30 did not take well to gravel. It also demanded a lot of counter-steering throughout every corner -- every time I relaxed fully the bars, the bike went for upright and a straight line. Unlike the Michelins - the narrow PS had no chicken strips in the end - the BT30 would fold on worn tarmac at peg scraping pace repeatedly, giving a sensation of falling over another 10 degrees (but probably no more than a couple). Each time, it regained grip slowly but smoothly, all I did was relax and wait.
You can see the slip marks, which of course went around the circumference on both sides, in this image
The PR4, OTOH, had the most even wear across the thread that I have ever experienced - since I only ride on the road, up until now my tires have always been flat to varying degrees in the middle.
However, what I really wanted to discuss is the experience I had today on a new pair of tires. A lot of Deauville riders praise the PR2 as superb for the bike, so I decided to try that. Then I read a test of the Maxxis M6029 Supermaxx and went for that up front. Yes, I know many say never mix brands, and preferably not models. But I have done that since 1980, mostly with great results, but also a few that did not work. I have, though, had more tires from the same maker that did not work admirably.
So how did the pairing work? Splendid! The only thing not quite perfect is that the bike now want to ever so slightly fall into corners and need a touch of input to straighten up - opposite to what it was, but also to a much, much lesser degree. Confidence and grip was excellent from the moment I left the garage with the fresh rubber, and there was no hint of insecurity or numbness throughout the 200+ mile ride. The rear tire lost any trace of virgin rubber within 10 miles.They even worked nice on gravel.
Most interesting, though, is that the bike now require much less lean for any given corner speed, acting similarly to any other motorcycle. How and why I cannot say, but I could corner faster than before but did not scrape once. Peculiar, but also very positive.
Maxxis fresh before the ride